Government data shows that U.S. farmers again exported a record amount of soybeans, shipping 2.6 billion bushels to international buyers in the 2016-17 marketing year.
Valued at more than $28 billion, the milestone represented the second year in a row that exports exceeded 60 percent of U.S. soybean production. However, the United Soybean Board warns that record U.S. production is no longer enough to ensure markets for U.S. farmers. A USB board member points out that soy production is growing worldwide, giving buyers more choice. Derek Haigwood of Arkansas says the U.S. needs to “differentiate our product and farmer practices to customers” to position the U.S. as a preferred supplier in the future.
He suggests that improvements to meal and oil will help the U.S. “keep a strong foothold” in overseas markets.